AUGUST MESSAGE FROM SUZANNE
Dear Friends and Readers of the P&F Newsletter,
For the next two newsletters I wish to talk to you about CORRI LA VITA. First, so you “save the day” – September 30, 2012 – to walk and run with the 20,000 people who support this fabulous charity. Second, so you know how CORRI LA VITA has been honored by City of Florence recognition of the fine work that it has done. As you all know, I am very involved in this walk/run/race since its inception and it is very close to my heart and I want to share it with all of you.
This year on June 24, we were honored by the Mayor of Florence, Matteo Renzi, the Palazzo Vecchio in the Sala dei Cinquecento, for all of the good work that results from CORRI LA VITA. We were awarded the Fiorino D'Oro (The Gold Florin), which is the most prestigious award given by the city of Florence. This important award is presented once a year on John the Baptist's saint’s day. The Gold Florin is awarded to those people or societies that have given an outstanding contribution to the city.
CORRI LA VITA's goal is to make people aware of cancer, especially breast cancer. This year is our 10th anniversary and in recognition of this decade, the mayor has promised all the museums of Florence (state museums) will be free of charge for all CORRI LA VITA participants (wearing their T shirts of course). The CORRI LA VITA committee is also organizing a free concert in Piazza della Signoria as a closing event for the day. See the September Newsletter for details.
So my dear friends, especially those of you who have been to Florence and those who participated in CORRI LA VITA in the past and especially those who will walk or run with us this year, please help us to continue this wonderful work by sending a donation. Cheques should be made to “L.I.L.T. sezione Firenze” (which means La Lega Italiana per la Lotta conto i Tumori - cancer society - Florence section). I really hope you will see your way to writing a few zeros after the number! You may send your cheques to our office and we will see that they get to the right place.
Ciao, arrivederci, a presto!
P&F PICK APARTMENT RENTAL FOR AUGUST – Romantic Via Maggio Loft
This sunlit romantic hideaway at roof level on Via Maggio, the street of the best antique stores in Florence, is the perfect place for a couple who wants to shop in the markets and cook up scrumptious meals at home. An elevator takes you almost all the way to your door. The modern furnishings and minimalistic décor create a spacious feel. Just steps from the historic center, near some of the best restaurants in town make this the perfect place for la dolce vita.
For more information click this link.
BEST BEACHES (IN FLORENCE) FOR AUGUST – Sand Castle Competition on Ferragosto
Following the example of Paris, Florence has its own beaches along the Arno River. Naturally, bathing in the river is strictly forbidden, but for those of you who can’t get to the swimming pool or to seashore, this is a fun alternative.
First, there is La Spiaggina in the San Niccolò neighborhood where you can find umbrellas, sun loungers and other wooden gazebos. And if the heat is unbearable you can have a refreshing shower at the WC facilities. On the upper part of the beach there is the "Easy Living" kiosk for food and drinks.
On August 15, turn up at La Spiaggina for the annual sand castle competition.
In the San Frediano district, on one of the embankments of the Arno called "pescaia" there is another "beach resort" called Palco d'Autore. Umbrellas, sun loungers laid down a synthetic green field with a small swimming pool. There is also a restaurant, a lounge bar with concerts by Italian musicians.
EXHIBIT FOR AUGUST – Pinocchio in First Vision at the National Library
A free exhibition of the art of Pinocchio – the famous wooden puppet, who is celebrating the 131st anniversary of the first published edition of his exploits – is on show at the Biblioteca Nazionale (National Central Library) of Florence. This exhibit gives visitors an excuse to wander through the halls of the historically important library while becoming familiar with the characters of Collodi’s original story before Disney sweetened it.
At Pinocchio in Prima Visione (Pinocchio in First Vision) visitors can admire the fine drawings created by the famed illustrators of Pinocchio – Mazzanti, Magni, Chiostri, Mussino, Mannini, Bernardini, Futiqua and Cassinelli – shown alongside the related Italian editions preserved in the National Library.
The Galileo Room and the corridors in front of it, host the drawings dedicated to the two characters – the Cat and the Fox – from early editions of the Collodi’s book for children. In the Dante Room are 36 drawings of Attilio Mussino of the 1911 edition of the classic book.
Biblioteca Nazionale, Piazza dei Cavalleggeri, 1 off of Lungarno della Zecca Vecchia
Open: Mon. – Fri. 8:15am to 7pm and Sat. 8:15am to 1:30pm
BEST BOOK FOR EVERYONE FOR AUGUST – The Adventures of Pinocchio (Le Avventure Di Pinocchio), Carlo Collodi (Author), Nicolas J. Perella (Translator)
Those who grew up loving Disney’s movie about the wooden puppet who wanted to be a real boy should beware that Collodi's version of Pinocchio is inspired by the commedia dell'arte, and it's a much a darker, complex, and socially relevant tale than the Disney adaptation; like many classic children’s tales, it is both lively adventure and adult social critique.
Nicolas J. Perella is Professor Emeritus of Italian at the University of California, Berkeley. Perella's translation and introductory essay capture the wit, irony, ambiguity, and social satire of the original nineteenth-century text, finally reclaiming Pinocchio for adult readers. It also represents the first time the entire story has appeared in English. This bilingual edition includes over 130 drawings by the original illustrator, Enrico Mazzanti.
"The real Pinocchio offers pleasures never hinted at by Disney. . . . A masterful blend of realism and fantasy."—William Grimes, Voice Literary Supplement
"Perella's opening Essay is no mere "introduction"; it is the fullest exposition of the novel ever to appear in English . . . enormously rewarding."—Richard Wunderlich, The Pinocchio Catalogue
"The best English translation."—Franco Fido, Harvard University
Carlo Collodi [pseudonym of Carlo Lorenzini] (1826-1890), Italian journalist and author wrote The Adventures of Pinocchio, first serialized in Il giornale per i bambini (The Children's Magazine) as Le avventure di Pinocchio (1881-1883). (Spoiler alert) Created by his poor woodcarver father Geppetto, Pinocchio is a mischievous boy whose nose grows if he tells a lie.
At times dark and comical, with allegory to the socio-political times in Italy, Jiminy Cricket and The Blue Fairy accompany him as he redeems himself to become a "real" boy whilst learning the moral of the story. After several months of the series' well-received publication, Pinocchio was left for dead hanging from the branch of an oak tree by two robbers. There was such an outpouring of grief and demand for a continuation that Collodi acquiesced.
The novel Pinocchio became a best-seller, the adventures of the now iconic puppet-boy appealing universally to children from all over North America, Europe, and numerous other countries. He inspired many adaptations to the big screen including Walt Disney and Roberto Begnini.
BEST PARK FOR AUGUST – Pinocchio Park In Collodi
Inaugurated in 1956, the Pinocchio Park is no ordinary theme park, but rather a work of art that visitors can walk through, climb on, and recall childhood stories. It's a rather old fashioned kind of park from the days when you didn't need bloodcurdling death-defying rides to charm the kids. The park tells Carlo Collodi's (the pen name of Carlo Lorenzini) version of the story of Pinocchio through sculpture, mosaics and puppet shows. It features a museum with Pinocchio related items.
The literary itinerary, marked out by mosaics, buildings and sculptures set amidst the greenery, emerges as an inspired combination of art and nature. The path is winding, and the dense vegetation means that every stage on the route comes as an unexpected surprise, with the very plants and trees contributing to create the atmosphere and the episodes in the story of the Adventures of Pinocchio. The Park itself is the site of constantly renewed cultural activities that are always mindful of its roots: exhibitions of art and illustrations inspired by children’s literature and the story of Pinocchio, puppet-making workshops, puppet and marionette shows and minstrels enliven the visit to the Park, depending on the season.
The Pinocchio Park could not have been set up anywhere else but in Collodi, where the ancient village has remained as it was hundreds of years ago, a cascade of houses that ends behind the 17th century Villa Garzoni and its fabulous garden (another stop you should add to your day in Collodi). It was in the village that Carlo Lorenzini’s mother was born, and here that he spent his childhood with his grandparents, the Orzali.
The original idea for Pinocchio Park came to the Mayor of Pescia in 1951. He invited leading artists to enter a competition. No less than eighty-four sculptors responded to the invitation: the joint winners were Emilio Greco with Pinocchio and the Fairy and Venturino Venturini with the Square of the Mosaics. In 1956 the famous bronze group that symbolically represents the metamorphosis of Pinocchio, and the extraordinary mosaics showing the principal episodes from the Adventures were unveiled. In 1963 a restaurant, Osteria del Gambero Rosso, was added. In 1972 the Park was enlarged by the addition of the Land of Toys, a fantastic itinerary that contains twenty-one sculptures in bronze and steel by Pietro Consagra and constructions by Marco Zanuso, evoking the plot of the Adventures of Pinocchio.
Collodi, located about midway between Montecatini Terme Spa (10 km), and Lucca (15 km), near Florence (60 km). Take highway 435 heading east from Lucca towards Florence to find Collodi.
PICK EATERY FOR AUGUST – AqAbA in Sesto Fiorentino
To continue the Pinocchio theme, go to Sesto Fiorentino and dine at AqAbA, the trendy restaurant that sits in the site of an ancient limonaia the garden of the historic 19th century Villa Gerini. The garden behind the restaurant is reportedly the site Collodi used for the “Field of Miracles.”
‘The Field of Miracles’ is one of the most famous settings described in The Adventures of Pinocchio. The Cat and the Fox led Pinocchio to this ‘miraculous’ field so that he could bury his gold coins there. The cheaters’ advice was clear: all Pinocchio had to do was sprinkle some salt over the spot and wait until the next morning. They convinced the naive puppet that a tree – with golden florins instead of fruit – would sprout up in less than a day’s time. In his book Pinocchio a Casa Sua, author Nicola Rilli suggests that Collodi was inspired by an urban legend about Francesco Zoppi, the Villa Gerini’s gardener at the end of the 1800s, who is said to have found two sacks of golden coins in the garden, which he promptly turned over to Count del Benino, the villa’s owner. Scathingly criticized by his contemporaries, Zoppi later denied his honesty, saying that he had not found any money at all.
Dine by candlelight (AqAbA is only open for dinner, not lunch) under the Tuscan sky with a view of the garden. The seafood dishes are the most popular (AqAbA takes its name from the seaport in Jordan), but the pizza also gets rave reviews. The service is fast and friendly. Indoors the decor is starkly modern. Some may find it bit pricey at about 40 euro per person depending on the wine selected (there is an excellent wine list). A pizza night will run considerably less.
AqAbA – Viale XX Settembre 221, Sesto Fiorentino; Tel. 055 442 1287; Open: 7:30pm to midnight
BEST GELATO EXPERIENCE FOR AUGUST – Carabé
Carabé is the passion of Antonio and Loredana Lisciandro. The couple are from Patti, on the northern coast of Sicily near Messina. Antonio has been described as a “walking encyclopedia of gelato.” Antonio’s grandfather was the first gelataio in the family. Antonio picked up not only Lisciandro family skills and secrets, but inherited their enthusiasm for making gelato and other ice cream treats.
Carabé presents a wide range of granita and gelato, and specialty items like cannoli, cassata, and brioche, the Sicilian version of the ice cream sandwich. Antonio and Loredana use no preservatives or artificial coloring, and only the finest pistachios, hazelnuts, almonds, and “bumpy” lemons imported weekly from Sicily. Fruit flavors vary with what is in season. Carabé features cremolata made with the pulp of fruits such as strawberry, blackberry, peach, and cantaloupe. (text from website)
Carabé is at Via Ricasoli, 60 (red), a few blocks from the Galleria dell’Accademia; Tel.: 055-289476.
Second Florence location: Carabé is also at Piazza S. Jacopino, 9 (red).Go to the website at http://www.gelatocarabe.com/coupon.html to get your free upgrade certificate. Just reading the instructions will give you the giggles.
FORZA VIOLA!! FOR AUGUST – Florentine Calcio
P&F Sports Reporters Simon Clark & Anne Brooks bring you a preview of upcoming Florentine Calcio.
Spectacular Viola! Our new kit sponsor is Spanish outfit Joma Sport, one of the world’s top sportswear brands. Joma helped launch our new shirts with high-tech razzamatazz in Signoria; breath-taking CGI projections transformed the Palazzo Vecchio’s façade - the David with a Viola scarf fluttering in an imaginary breeze! Football? We’re in that mad zone where casual “friendlies” deliver scores of 23-0 and tell us zip. “Serious” friendlies began at the end of July but they don’t promise much of a test either until we play Galatasaray in Istanbul on 8 August. Just as well, since Montella & Company are still assembling a squad. The 64 billion euro (inflation being what it is) question is “will Jovetic stay or go?” Football is about NOW. If Jo-Jo stays, we’ll love him to bits; if he goes, he’ll be forgotten by tomorrow!
Who’s in, who’s out? We’re training at Moena, the transfer window wide-open till the end of August, the fans protesting at too many goings, not enough comings! Exits - Free transfers - Montolivo to Milan (old news), Amauri to Parma (the curva liked him but he didn’t deliver); we rescinded Kharja’s contract (he didn’t fit in); Natali has been released. On loan - Babacar (to Padua: what is the problem with Babacar? Is it attitude?), Salifu (Catania) and De Silvestri (Sampdoria: he probably won’t come back). Sales - Gamberini and Behrami (10mn Euros the pair) to Napoli; fair enough on Gamberi’s age but Behrami is a loss – presumably, we needed the money. Incoming – Cassani is now entirely ours. Goalkeeper Lupatelli comes on a free transfer from Genoa to sit third behind Viviano (if his loan goes through: Della Valle says it will) and Neto (assuming Boruc has gone: no-one is talking). Defensive depth comes with Egyptian Hegazy and Argentine Roncaglia. Up front, in come El Hamdaoui (from Ajax) and the Columbian, Juan Cuadrado (Udinese).
It looks like Montella is backing Nastasic/Camporese as the heart of our defence - highlighting the Mr’s positive thinking. Montella isn’t worried about the midfield (though we are rumoured to be close to signing Chilean Matias Fernandez from Sporting Lisbon); he is looking to a solid defence and then wrapping his attack around Jovetic with Cerci and Vargas in attendance. He is reflecting on Ljajic, who may yet stay with us. Is it true that Montella has made Pasqual captain (a good choice), that this has irked Jovetic (if it has, then that’s a character defect) and that Jovetic has decided as a consequence that he’d be better off at Juventus (where he’ll not be skipper)? Um. Montella would have wanted assurances about Jo-Jo? Andrea Della Valle is still saying we shall not sell him. Trouble is, we are marooned where the media make it up if there isn’t any news! We shall see...........
2012 European Championship. Last month, we left Italy vanquishing England and gearing up to face Germany. The normally slick Teutonic machine malfunctioned as it tried to neutralise Pirlo – impossible task and utter misjudgement by the German coach – instead of playing to its own strengths. Mario Balotelli came good, heading in from Cassano’s delicate cross, and we gave them the run-around. A perfect long ball from Montolivo and “Super Mario” powered in the goal of the championship. Their late penalty was an ironic consolation prize. The boot was on the other foot in the final as Spain produced fabulous football from another, golden planet. We fought magic with effort but it was all over when, having used up all our substitutes, Chiellini had to come off; we were down to ten men. 4-0 looks grim in the archives but we were worthy runners-up. Prandelli can be optimistic about the World Cup!
Football’s Nearly Back. In Italy, the summer transfer window is designed to depress everyone who doesn’t support Inter, Milan, Roma or Juventus but we retain our good feeling about next season. We think Della Valle, Prade and Montella will make a good combo; we know a champion team will always beat a team of champions – and that is Montella’s challenge. No-one expected Prandelli to take us to the last stages of the Champion’s League and the brink of putting out the mighty Bayern Munich with the players we had; no-one dreamed he could take us to the semi-final of the Europa Cup. But he did. We start Serie A against Udinese. September brings Napoli, Juventus and Inter. Forza Vincenzo!
THE FIORENTINA SCHEDULE:
Serie A starts next month:
Week 1: 26 Aug/home Fiorentina-Udinese
Ticket information - seating plan, prices, and ticket outlets - is on the "biglietteria" section of the club's website [www.it.violachannel.tv ]. Tickets can be purchased at official box offices and holders of TicketOne lottery franchises. Sources include:
CHIOSCO DEGLI SPORTIVI, via degli Anselmi 1. Tel 055 292363.
BAR MARISA, viale Manfredo Fanti 41. Tel 055 572723.
BAR STADIO, viale Manfredo Fanti 3r. Tel 055 576169.
ACF OFFICIAL TICKET-OFFICE, via Duprè 28 (corner of via Settesanti).
NUOVO BOX OFFICE, Via delle Vecchie Carceri, 1, (inside the Murate). Tel 055 264321
FELTRINELLI FIRENZE, Via de' Cerretani 39/32R
BEST EXTRAVAGANZAS FOR AUGUST – The night of the shooting stars of San Lorenzo
On Tuesday 10, join the neighborhood of San Lorenzo in a celebration of their patron, St Lawrence. Traditionally, this is known as the Night of the Falling Stars – in reality an annual meteor shower. Since San Lorenzo was martyred on this day (by grilling) in 258, the stars are also seen as his tears.
During the morning, a parade marches through town from the Palagio di Parte Guelfa on Via Pellicceria, to the Basilica di San Lorenzo, starting around 10:30 am. At 7:00 pm, head to Piazza San Lorenzo for an outdoor celebration. There will be free lasagna, music and watermelon for all. The event begins some time after the market stalls that line the streets by day are rolled away. In addition, in honor of San Lorenzo a concert by the G. Rossini Philharmonic Orchestra is held each year in Piazza San Lorenzo at 9:00 pm.
For concert info: tel. 055603407 and http://www.filarmonicarossini.it.
For festival info: tel. 055 0516181 and www.comune.fi.it
To best view the falling meteorites (when the Earth intersects the orbit of an old comet whose fragments penetrate the atmosphere), you should go somewhere outside of the city and away from “light pollution”. This year the best viewing days will be August 12 and 13. So if you’re staying in one of P&F’s rental apartments or villas in the countryside, you’re in luck!